Most school districts in San Diego County – and throughout the state – struggle with declining enrollment. But the city of San Marcos’ population has more than doubled since 1990, and that’s meant lots of new students for San Marcos Unified, which has to constantly find space for its growing student body.

In 2016-2017, although Latinos make up more than 44 percent of the overall enrollment at San Diego Unified, they made up only 33 percent of the GATE program. For black students, the disproportionality is even worse, with an 8 percent overall enrollment rate, but only a 3 percent enrollment in the GATE program.

San Diego Unified has said the high number of teacher retirements could mean schools in wealthier neighborhoods may be impacted by the turnover just as much as low-income schools. But even once layoff notices are rescinded, the process has a bigger impact on low-income schools, which tend to have more junior employees.